This article explores the intermedial as a conceptual framework for Asia media critique and history. Although not a new concept in media studies, it proves useful for troubling the divide often imposed on old and new media forms—including technologies of communication—and for theorizing their movement in and across sociocultural contexts. The article both proposes and carries out an intermedial critique of handwriting in early twentieth-century Japan, setting it in the context of changing ideas and practices of written communication. Using model-letter guides and handwriting manuals, as well as examples from epistolary fictions, the author constructs a graphological discourse of the period, arguing for the need to think through the newness of “old” media to understand the complex ways they are (re)enfolded, both technically and conceptually, into evolving local mediascapes.
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Hoyt J. Long; (Il)legibility and Handwriting in Meiji Letters: A Media History. positions 1 May 2017; 25 (2): 255–292. doi: https://doi.org/10.1215/10679847-3852225
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